Discover more from The Retroist
Leave it to Beaver the Complete Series Available on DVD
One of the most popular series in TV history, Leave It to Beaver (1957-1963) stood out from the flock during TV’s golden age. While most of its contemporaries (i.e. The Donna Reed Show and The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet) were star-driven vehicles in which the kids were merely supporting players, Beaver’s action centered on the children; seven-year-old Theodore “Beaver” Cleaver and his twelve-year-old brother Wally. Though the show went off the air in the ‘60s, it continues to charm new generations even today through regularly show reruns.
When I was a kid, I loved staying home from school. Almost weekly, I would make an attempt to stay at home. Not really pretending to be sick, but more straight up asking. It almost never worked. Maybe once a year, but when I did get to be home on that day or when I was ill, it meant soup and old television all day. I would bring my bedding down to the living room couch, make a nest and settle in for the long haul. This is where I was primarily exposed to the show, Leave it to Beaver. It was a show that gave me great comfort, almost as much as the soup that I would have for lunch and dinner. A perfect B&W look into a suburbia that didn’t exist and that, more often than not, fueled NyQuil dreams of picket fences and milk with every meal.
I have occasionally managed to catch the show in my adult life, but have never been able to catch it with any consistency. Which is a shame. I wanted to watch the show from start to finish and watch the Cleaver family age and see the boys get older. Instead I was stuck with snippets, pieces of a broken puzzle. Well no more! Shout Factory, that shimmering wellspring of classic TV, is releasing the full series from start to finish in a comprehensive DVD box set.
The set, which comes out on 6/29/2010 has all 235 original episodes of the show on 37 discs!! This is happiness in a box people and I am still letting the whole thing wash over me and will be for months to come. I finished season 1 and and a quarter through season 2 and the picture quality is better than I have ever seen in broadcast. Plus the set has some nice exclusive extras that include:
Featurettes including cast members Jerry Mathers, Tony Dow, Barbara Billingsly, Ken Osmond and Frank Bank
The rare pilot episode
Audio interviews with cast
Special Film for the US Treasury featuring the Cleavers
A brief conversation with theme song composer Dave Kahn
Reproduction of the original 1959 Leave it to Beaver “Money Maker” board game
So much retro TV in one place, it is almost too good to be true. So what are you waiting for, pre-order/pick up your copy of Leave it to Beaver the Complete Series today!